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What Does a Nursing Case Manager Do?

Nurse case managers are critical professionals in the healthcare space. Upon graduating from nursing programs, they enter positions that require them to evaluate patients and implement individualized healthcare plans, document medical records, implement other nursing procedures and perform diagnostic procedures. states, “A nurse case manager is a medical professional who coordinates the long-term care of patients. They update the patient care plans according to the patient’s condition and educate both the patient and their families on how to follow the plan.”

Many case managers are assigned to patients throughout their treatment or health journey, allowing them the space to get to know patients personally and ensuring those in need of long-term care will receive top-quality attention.

Why Are Nursing Case Managers Important?

Nursing case managers are essential to the field of nursing. Nursing 2023 states, “Their involvement helps patients and caregivers make the best choices to manage the complex world of healthcare.”

The top priority of a nurse case manager is to listen to their patients and uncover their top concerns. By doing this effectively, they can properly advocate for the needs of different communities and hear all voices equally. As a result, nursing case managers form a bonded relationship with patients, allowing them to deliver compassionate care.

Case managers also contribute to the profitability of the organizations in which they work. “As these professionals advocate for the patient, they can help extend cost savings and other benefits to support systems such as insurance companies and hospitals,” explains Nursing 2023.

Without the help of a nurse case manager, there would be little to no coordination between healthcare providers, insurance companies, hospitals and patients. Unfortunately, this disconnect can lead to extensive miscommunication between everyone involved in the care process, resulting in frustration and potential errors.

Salary and Certifications

According to Nursing 2023, all case managers should hold a license/certification or a bachelor’s degree, along with other professional requirements. Indeed explains that some of the certifications for nursing case managers include:

  • Nursing case management certification from the American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • Accredited case management certification from the American Case Management Association
  • Certified case manager from the Commission for Case Manager Certification

However, not all nursing case managers are required to have a license/certification and can hold this title without pursuing such levels. This all depends on the individual and whether or not they want to gain more experience as a case manager. The main certification exams for nurse case managers ask questions such as entry-level clinical knowledge and skills that all registered nurses (RNs) should hold throughout their professional careers.

Yet, there is motivation to expand one’s knowledge. According to Indeed, the average salary for a nurse case manager is $78,674 per year, with an additional $11,875 in annual overtime pay. The compensation can also elevate if the nurse professional has years of experience and verified certifications from nursing associations.

Equip Your Leadership Skills With a Bachelor’s Degree

For those interested in pursuing a career as a nursing case manager, a great first step is to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. Those who enroll in the online RN to BSN program at the  University of Illinois Chicago will prepare to fulfill the role of a nursing case manager.

The program equips nurses with the necessary care, leadership and evidence-based research skills required for the job. In addition, students explore the evolving needs of healthcare and cultivate a compassionate nursing practice.

In as few as 12 months, this program prepares students to guide and influence individuals and groups in evidence-based healthcare. For example, the Leadership and Management in Nursing course covers the basics of exploring and applying principles of nursing leadership through an integrative practice. In the Nursing Health Promotion course, students focus on health promotion and disease prevention for individuals, families, groups and populations.

Each future graduate will obtain the knowledge and skills necessary to enter influential roles such as nursing management, quality or safety manager, nursing case management, community or public health nursing or expanded roles within nursing specialties.

Learn more about the University of Illinois Chicago’s online RN to BSN program.

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